Leen Kawas, PhD
Entrepreneur | Inventor | Biotech Executive | Corporate Financing and Development
Leen Kawas is the co-founder and managing general partner at Propel Bio Partners. Leen is building a biotech focused fund to support life science innovations, leveraging her experience as an inventor, scientist, and entrepreneur. She came to the US from Jordan in 2008. She co-founded Athira and became CEO in 2014. She led the advancement of multiple late-stage clinical programs and took the company public in 2020 raising over $400 million. She was the first woman in 20 years in Washington State, and one of only 22 women founders in the US to take their company public. She has received numerous awards and recognitions, including Life Science Entrepreneurial Achievement Award (2020), French-American Foundation Leader (2019), and GeekWire Startup CEO of the Year (2019). Leen serves on multiple boards including Inherent Biosciences and Persephone Biosciences, and she is part of the Springboard Network and is a passionate supporter of scientist entrepreneurs, in particular women. In her current position, in addition to capital, her vision is to support impactful research and next gen innovators; helping people live better healthier lives. Leen lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two young children – she enjoys music, good food, learning and engaging conversations.